Tennessee Valley Basketball Players Bring Home Gold At National Senior Games

MADISON COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) – David King has been playing basketball for more than 40 years.

“For long as I can remember it’s been a big part of my life. It’s probably the only way I could have gone to college.”

King played basketball through high school, then went to Florence State University (Now the University of North Alabama) on a basketball scholarship.
His fierce love of competition is what has kept him playing all these years, and what has helped propel his team, the Huntsville Bama Boys, all the way to the National Senior Games, for the fourth time since 2007.

All in their 60s, the team is made up of King, Snyder Washington, Chris Jones, Danny Petty, and Mike Morgan.

They compete state-wide, practicing several times a week. It was that drive that helped them bring home the gold at this year’s Senior Games.

“It was really close. We won the first game by one point in overtime, we won the second game by one point and the last game by 4,” said King. “So every point could have been the difference between winning and losing.”

The Huntsville Bama Boys are just some of the nearly 80 Alabamians that competed in the Senior Games, and they’re certainly not the only ones from the Tennessee Valley to bring home a medal.

WHNT News 19 met up with tennis players Horace Rice and James Sullivan as they prepared to head to the games, and then again when they returned.

Rice and his doubles partner brought home the bronze medal.

Eighty-year-old James Sullivan didn’t do as well as he had hoped during his first time competing on the national level.

“I feel out of 32, in my age division, I came in 7th. I wanted the gold, but I didn’t get the gold,” said Sullivan. Still,  “I’m happy I got something.”

Sullivan says he’s going to take that positive attitude all the way to 2015 – when the next Senior Games will be held in Minnesota.

“When the last man falls I say ‘okay, I lost.’ But until then, I am always positive.”

Sullivan, Rice, and all of the Huntsville Bama Boys say they hope to return to the National Senior Games in 2015 to represent Alabama. Until then, they’ll keep on competing across the state.

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